Rumors of NVIDIA's Shield TV refresh have been making the rounds since March thanks to code hinting at a new controller and remote. Since then, we've seen a unit with the product code "mdarcy" pop up on the Play Developer console, suggesting a minor refresh over the 2017 Shield TV, "darcy," as well as an FCC filing corroborating that. However, new evidence hints that the new FCC submission was actually for a second new Shield TV, codenamed "sif."
According to XDA-Developers, who combed through the Shield Experience 8.0 that rolled out to existing units this week, there are mentions of both "sif" and "mdarcy" alongside "foster" (2015 model), "darcy" (2017 model) in various strings and bits of code. This indicates there are two new Shield TVs in the works, not one.
The current theory is that "mdarcy" is just an upgraded version of the 2017 Shield. The reasoning is that it has a similar product name and runs an upgraded t210b01 Tegra X1 chip according to kernel source code (the same updated chip that's found in the Nintendo Switch Light and newer Switch units). Plus, the existing Shield's FCC filing has been updated, suggesting a minor refresh might be on the way.
That means "sif" is the proper new Shield TV that was spotted in the recent FCC filing. According to code in the Experience 8.0 update, "sif" won't have a TV Tuner or USB port, though it keeps the SD card reader and also runs the t210b01 Tegra X1 processor. The label placement in the FCC documentation for this Shield compared to the existing model, as well as the potential for an internal power supply, which we discussed earlier, lead us to think this new model may actually have a dongle-like form factor, or at least a smaller and more streamlined one.
Left: Existing Shield FCC label (darcy) and presumably mdarcy too. Right: New Shield label (likely sif).
We still don't know when NVIDIA plans to announce its new hardware, but we'll be keeping an eye and will let you know once we have more details.